Build Your Brand Like a Pro: Simple Tips to Stand Out from the Crowd!
– by Patrice Bisiot
Building your Brand, how does it work???
You read and hear about it every day, in the press, on TV, or on social media – Branding. In today’s world, this notion is up, front, and center, far beyond being a celebrity, in the public eye, or else rich and famous. Yes, you are part of it too. Yes, You Are.
What you wear influences your thinking process, your negotiating skills, your self-esteem, and even your hormone levels and heart rate.
Some industries are more advanced in speaking fashion literacy than others. For example, most popular bloggers, fashion or not, business owners even Tech Leaders understand their outfits, body language, and voice pitch represent who they are, therefore increasing their reputation, influence, and power – their Brand. The same applies even if you’re not in fashion, not rich, or not famous! Whether you are going on a job interview, pitching your dream client, or being on your next date, the outcome is based on the message you send out. Period.
Your personal style is a language unto itself. How you style yourself in the morning is the way you share your life story with the world, the clues you are offering others, and the way you show who you are. Appearance is an effective tool for standing out in today’s competitive marketplace, so be clear about the message you convey, personally and professionally. Your presence speaks volumes, in fact, it says it all before you can utter a word. When you walk into the room, the deal is done. The nanosecond (and NOT 5 seconds as the urban legend says) you have to impact others upon your entrance is the only one opportunity you have. There is no re-do, no oops I will be right back, no second chance.
So what is Branding?
Italian fashion designer Miuccia Prada once said, “What you wear is how you present yourself to the world. Fashion is instant language.”
Passed your company’s logo, the font you have decided to display on your business card, the design of your web, you are your Brand. People are not buying any of the above, they are not going to swipe to the right or listen to what you have to say if they don’t understand clearly who YOU are.
Still skeptical? Still thinking appearance, style and image are for others? Just a vanity project? Nothing answers better doubts than a good old study. A real one. not like:
“A new study says that 53 percent of us will say no to a beach holiday this year as we don’t dare to bare in a bikini”
This new study was conducted by who? LoveLite, a London liposuction clinic. Although not necessarily false, in that case, a mean pitch to call women and men on their insecurities. Thanks but no thanks. Back to a real study, definitely in my personal top 3 favorite to illustrate miles of blah-blah and countless explanations on how what you wear changes your life. Literally.
A headline in the Daily Mail blares: “Clothing has a significant effect on self-esteem and confidence.” “Students were more assured” when wearing Superman T-shirts than when not wearing Superman T-shirts, and women performed relatively to extremely poorly in math tests while wearing swimsuits during a study, too worried about what the others are thinking, too concerned comparing bodies and assessing who is the thinnest, most tone and youngest looking.
Led by University of Hertfordshire psychology professor Karen Pine, who is quoted in the article saying: “Research shows what we wear affects us. … Putting on different clothes creates different thoughts and mental processes. It will impact what is coming next” Pine’s study, we are told, found that “wearing a white coat was found to improve a person’s mental agility. And … when women are stressed, they neglect 90 percent of their wardrobe.” In this simple but effective demonstration, instead of concentrating on the task at hand, this group of women was mostly concerned about what they wore than answering the questions correctly. Simply exchanging what they initially had on into a bikini transformed their mindset completely, in a matter of seconds, forgetting essentially why they were here in the first place… to take a math test! This is the power of what you wear.
Here, just a study, therefore inconsequential but imagine if it had been a true test to get those women their dream job? Not so great… You ONLY have a nanosecond to make a life-lasting Impact.” .
People generate impressions through visual cues. The impressions you form, and how people make decisions about you personally and professionally, are intricately tied to how you look, how they feel about you, and their first impression just by looking at you. Studies have shown that your personal style can affect how you perform and negotiate at work.
Whether you’re hired for a role or considered for a promotion, you want to go on that second date, get people’s attention in the board room or be a leader in your community is directly correlated to how you visually represent your personal Brand. How you present yourself sends a subliminal message to those around you.
How does that even work?
Each morning, while getting ready, you are aligning your emotions with you appearance upon your day’s goals. The way you feel at the moment of choosing your outfit for the day will tell the world your life story. Yes, your life story. The way you have this “gut instinct” on others, well, they have the same on you. We are reactive beings. These 2 components equal your Brand. Your Brand represents who you are in the core of you, your personal beliefs, it is all about You. Your Brand is YOU. So say it clearly, show it mindfully, put it together consistently.
So how making the style you choose work best for you and use it to advance your career? Get your partner’s attention? Being the top sales associate? The first thing to do is to review your personal reflection. When was the last time you carefully assessed yourself in the mirror? Not just a quick look and go, I am talking about one LONG look to establish where you are at with your style, what is conveys, how you feel wearing it. Interestingly, when it comes to career, most individuals will evaluate it regularly to know when to upgrade their position, feel ready for a promotion or else to open their business. When it comes to appearance, the majority of people feel like – “It is secondary, It works for now, It is good enough” – NO NO NO. In fact, it is the contrary. The more progress you make on your professional path, the more you need to observe your evolution! Just like your body, your skin, your knowledge, your taste, it includes your appearance, portal of your message. This ritual you practice every morning needs to be purposeful. Aligning your emotions with your image is your responsibility, your duty, your authority. It creates success in all your life’s areas!
In my years of helping celebrities, global leaders, and entrepreneurs to understand what it takes to creating a Brand (personal and professional, no you do NOT separate one from the other, you are only one person!) I heard a million times, and still do, “Make me look powerful, Make me look gorgeous, Make me look sexy” Before we create the end result, I need to know what each word mean to You. Not a magic trick but a process to fully comprehend who YOU are. Upon the part of the world you live in, your childhood, your religion, your mentor, you have created patterns of behavior. Each word means something specific to you from your life’s experience, your mindset, your emotional connection to each of them… For instance, say to a group of 100 “What is short hair?” I promise you 100 different answers! Why? Simply because each word you nurture is based on your own feeling, your personal reality, your inner perception.